Impact of University-Provided Foods on Division I Female Athletes' Calorie and Nutrition Consumption

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Journal/Book Title/Conference

Food and Nutrition Conference and Expo of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics


Washington, D.C.

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After reading this poster, participants will be able to understand the impact of the university-provided foods on Division 1 female athlete’s dietary intake. Insufficient calorie intake for energy needs is a concern for female athletes. The female athlete triad consists of low energy availability, menstrual irregularity, and impaired bone health. Universities may provide athletes with food via refueling stations, team dinners, etc. This study aimed to determine if university-provided foods had a positive effect on female athletes’ calorie and nutrient intake. Twenty-two Division 1 female athletes (19±1.36 years) participated in this observational study. For three weekdays and one weekend day, participants completed the online Automated Self-Administered 24-hour recall (ASA-24), and indicated on another online survey if, and what university-provided foods they consumed. Mann-Whitney U tests were conducted to compare calorie and nutrient intake on days when university-provided foods were consumed, and days when they were not. University-provided foods were consumed on 36 of the 87 days reported (40.2%). There were no significant differences in calorie, carbohydrate, protein, fiber, or vitamin C intake when comparing the dietary intake on days when university-provided foods were consumed vs not. However, there were significantly higher intake of calcium (Mean Rank=53.86 vs 37.37, p=.003), potassium (Mean Rank=52.36 vs 38.37, p=0.011), and vitamin D (Mean Rank=52.36 vs 38.37, p=0.033). These findings suggest that the athletes in this sample regulated their intake such that they consumed a similar amount of calories on days in which they did not consume university-provided foods, and that university-provided foods may support diet quality among athletes.

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